HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Purdue biologists clarify how a cellular 'spacecraft' opens its airlock

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Scientists have a tough time visualizing the tiny hatchways that allow nutrients to pass into our cells, but a group of Purdue University biologists may have found the next best thing: a glimpse into the workings of the "motor" that opens and closes them.

A research team led by Jue Chen has clarified the connection between these minuscule gates - which are called membrane transport proteins - and the steps by which they use a cell's energy to permit or deny materials entry into the interior of the cell from the outside world.

In what the team perceives to be a three-step process, cells feed chemical energy to a tiny machine called an ABC protein, which is the part of the membrane protein that connects it to the interior of the cell. These ABC proteins use the energy to bend the membrane protein into its open and closed positions, allowing the cell both to bring in nutrients and to flush out waste. "We think we have a better handle on a process fundamental to life in creatures from bacteria to humans," said Chen, who is an assistant professor of biology in Purdue's College of Science. "This is the first time the entire cycle has been visualized, and this could enhance our understanding of how the process of metabolism unfolds."

The team's paper appears in this week's issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Chen's group also includes her Purdue colleagues Gang Lu and James M. Westbrooks, as well as Amy L. Davidson, who recently relocated to Purdue from the Baylor College of Medicine. The team used X-ray crystallography and other advanced imaging techniques to obtain a clear picture of the ABC protein, a method which has only had limited success in revealing secrets of the membrane proteins themselves.

Membrane proteins in cells have been likened to spacecraft airlocks, which ensure that only the astronauts gain entry and no air is lost. Where spacecraft have metal walls, cells have membranes
'"/>

Contact: Chad Boutin
cboutin@purdue.edu
765-494-2081
Purdue University
2-Dec-2005


Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Purdue-IU researchers explore new method for early disease diagnosis
2. Alzheimers drug based on Purdue -- designed inhibitor begins clinical trials
3. NIH selects Purdue to use phi29 DNA packaging motor for National Nanomedicine Development Center
4. IU, Purdue selected for major NCI biomarker tools initiative
5. Purdue creates new low-cost system to detect bacteria
6. Industry, C-SPAN leaders energize Lugar-Purdue summit
7. Purdue researchers find switch for skeletal-muscle atrophy
8. Purdue project could help pets serve as disease watchdogs
9. Purdue scientists see biochemistrys future - with quantum physics
10. Purdue scientists treat cancer with RNA nanotechnology
11. Purdue researchers find key to rice blast fungus

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:8/12/2020)... ... August 12, 2020 , ... ... that are ideal for public health agencies of all sizes. With a focus ... helping at-risk individuals find appropriate health care, Mosio helps public health departments automate ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... ... 2020 , ... BioFactura, Inc. today announced a $1 million ... & Technology Office—Chemical and Biological Defense (JSTO-CBD) of the Department of Defense (DoD). ... efficient mammalian cell culture-based bioprocess suitable to meet surge requirement needs for rapid ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 08, 2020 , ... ... Gene Therapy Regulation, An FDAnews Webinar, Wednesday, July 22, 2020 • 1:30 p.m.-3:00 ... but what is the most effective way to complete one? Will the study ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2020)... ... August 13, 2020 , ... Inc. magazine today ... most prestigious ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents a ... segment—its independent small businesses. Intuit, Zappos, Under Armour, Microsoft, Patagonia, and many other ...
(Date:8/3/2020)... ... August 03, 2020 , ... ERT, the ... CEO has been named one of the 100 most inspiring individuals in the ... honorees are selected based on how they have inspired their colleagues and affected ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... Mass. (PRWEB) , ... July 29, 2020 , ... ... wire that can combine up to three different materials for use with CRM, ... combine up to three materials to meet specific design requirements, performance, and cost ...
(Date:7/22/2020)... ... ... Join experts from Reed Tech , Gary Saner, Sr. Manager, Information Solutions Life ... webinar on Thursday, August 13, 2020 at 11am EDT (4pm BST/UK). , The ... medical devices, the NMPA has departments dealing with medical device registration (pre-market approvals) and ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: